Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. company, has completed the delivery of the first three Bell 505 helicopters to the Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN), putting into motion a contract that is expected to see up to 40 Bell 505 helicopters built and delivered by 2025. In 2016, Bell Helicopter unveiled its Bell 505 light helicopter during the Republic of Korea Army Aviation Combat Development Seminar where subject matter experts discussed it as an affordable training solution for military operations. Bell Helicopter declared their intention to bid for South Korea’s upcoming THX training helicopter requirement to replace the MD 500s.
In May 2022, a contract between the Republic of Korea’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration and Bell was signed after the Bell 505 was selected as the new Republic of Korea military helicopter trainer. The Bell 505 helicopters will be used by both the ROKN and the Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) to train their pilots. The inclusion of the Republic of Korea Armed Forces takes the total number of government agencies worldwide that utilize the Bell 505 as its helicopter trainer to seven – Indonesian Navy, Jamaican Air Force, Japan Coast Guard, Horizon International Flight Academy of the UAE, Armed Forces of Montenegro, and the Royal Jordanian Air Force.
“The Republic of Korea Armed Forces’ decision to induct the Bell 505 is a testament to their need for an advanced helicopter training platform. The Bell 505’s state-of-the-art training environment unmatched in that class of helicopter will deliver skills to their next generation of pilots that will enhance their operational readiness. We are privileged to play a part in building these critical capabilities and supporting the Armed Forces’ fleet with industry-leading aftermarket programs” said Sameer Rehman, managing director, Asia Pacific, Bell.
The Bell 505 Jet Ranger X (JRX) is an American/Canadian light helicopter developed and manufactured by Bell Helicopter. The Bell 505 was unveiled at the 2013 Paris Airshow in June 2013 as the Bell SLS (Short Light Single).
Over 400 deliveries of the aircraft have been made and more than 100,000 global fleet hours clocked. With its dual-channel FADEC-controlled engine, glass cockpit, customizable cabin space, tie-downs and two-bladed rotor system, the Bell 505 is a leading aircraft in its class – one that ensures efficiency and dependability in every facet and on every flight.